A culture’s moral platitudes expose the sins for which its adherents hope to atone. This tension is present in popular critiques of the biblical commandment, “an eye for an eye.” But what happens when our assumed high ground amplifies the sins we want to erase? Worse, what if the people harmed by our platitudes respond to our abuse with a counter-morality? What happens when society disintegrates into a community of justified ideologues and entitled victims? Richard and Fr. Marc discuss St. Paul’s compensation in 1 Corinthians, the merciless servant in Matthew, and the problem of vengeance in the book of Judges and 1 and 2 Kings. Given the state of the world, the instruction, “an eye for an eye,” may be a goal beyond our reach.
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